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Rand Wants Vote on War Powers

Rand Wants Vote on War Powers

Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) wants his Senate colleagues to go on record to declare whether they believe President Barack Obama can attack Syria without congressional authorization. 

Roll Call reports Paul “has drafted an amendment to the Senate’s authorization for use of force against Syria” that “asks senators to answer a simple, but problematic question: Does Obama have authority to launch military strikes against Syria without Congress passing the resolution authorizing the use of force?” 

Paul has indicated that he believes Obama did not have that power. 

In a “Dear Colleague” letter on Monday, Paul wrote that the “resolution to authorize force in Syria goes too far, and also not far enough. It does too much, but also too little.”

“This resolution does too much by involving us in a civil war in which there is no clearly defined American national security interest,” he wrote. “Even the State Department argues that there is no military solution here that is good for the Syrian people, and the best path forward is a political solution. I will not vote to send my son, your son, or anyone’s daughter to fight for stalemate.”

According to Roll Call, the exact text of his amendment reads:

Notwithstanding any other provision of law, the authority to use force resides in Congress, and the President does not have authority to carry out the military action set forth in this resolution absent passage of the resolution.

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